The Sundowners (1960)
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as Mrs. Firth
as Jean Halstead
as Herb Johnson
as Jack Patchogue
as Mrs. Bateman
as Bob Halstead
as Shearer (uncredited)
as Farm Couple
as Farm couple
Critic Reviews for The Sundowners
Zinnemann's customary care for detail pays occasional dividends, but the film goes on rather too long.
...the film's lack of plot never becomes as pronounced as one might've feared...
This sprawling, often boring saga of Aussie nomads in the 1920s is directed by Zinnemann with his customary tamed discipline and human realism, elevated by the solid ensemble.
Audience Reviews for The Sundowners
***Due to the recent RT changes that have basically ruined my past reviews, I am mostly only giving a rating rather than a full review.***
It goes to prove that you may have Mitchum, Kerr and Ustinov and still not have a great film. This "Australian western" is dull at times and without enough redeeming qualities.
The lives of migrant laborers in early-20th century Australia are displayed with great thoughtfulness and care. The case for settling down and the case for remaining itinerant each have their appeal and their risks. The husband and wife at the center of the movie (portrayed by two of the best actors of the day, Robert Mitchum and Deborah Kerr) often disagree over these issues. Yet they do not shout at or belittle each other as so many film couples would in their place; instead, their shared experiences and mutual willingness to compromise have created a strong bond between them despite their different worldviews and aspirations. Their equal, loving partnership makes it easy for the audience to sympathize with both of their perspectives and to root for a conclusion that will satisfy them both. This is a beautiful, historically- and emotionally-intelligent movie with a top-shelf cast that includes Peter Ustinov, whose voice instantly brightens my day.
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